Pros and Cons of Purchasing a Brick Oven for Your Pizzeria


Brick ovens are unique pizza ovens that can provide a lot of value to your pizzeria business.


By Kinnek Knowledge Team  |  June 09, 2018

If you’re in the market for a new commercial oven for your pizzeria, then you’ve likely considered the possibility of a brick oven.  Numerous vendors offer customized brick ovens that are specially-built to meet your needs — installation services are typically included in the purchase price.

Brick ovens are among the many options available to those looking to produce high-quality pizzas.  Various other commercial oven options include, but are not necessarily limited, to: convection ovens, conveyor ovens, and pizza deck ovens.

Despite the fact that brick ovens are commonly associated with authentic, high-quality, and artisanal pizza, there are a number of “pros” and “cons” that are worth evaluating before you commit to a purchase.

Consider the following.

Pros

Highest-Quality Pizza

Generally speaking, brick ovens create the highest-quality pizzas out of the alternative types of commercial ovens.  Due to the heat at which the pizza cooks inside the brick oven, the pizza not only cooks quickly, but also seals moisture in and prevents a “soft” and overly “dough-y” texture from affecting the crust.

Brand Value

Brick oven pizza is a powerful marketing tool in today’s restaurant industry.  More and more often, customers are seeking out “authentic” and “artisanal” experiences, even if it comes at a slightly higher cost.  Brick oven use is essentially a stamp of approval guaranteeing your customers that the pizza will be of a particular style that may be suitable for their food preferences.

Low Cooking Times

Brick ovens can be operated at a range of different temperatures, but as a general rule, brick ovens run hot (from between 600 and 900 degree Fahrenheit!).  Because of the comparatively high heat, brick ovens can finish cooking a pizza in just 3 minutes, total — though cooking space may be limited, this means the total production volume is likely to be sufficient for a busy service, even.

Minimal Heat Recovery

Heat spreads evenly throughout the interior of the brick oven, minimizing the heat recovery period — assuming that your staff is adequately trained to handle baking with a brick oven (and know how to maintain the temperature of the brick oven at an appropriate level), you will effectively be able to remove and insert pizzas at-will.

Cons

Costly to Purchase and Install

Brick ovens tend to be more expensive (from an initial cost perspective) than other types of commercial pizza ovens, such as pizza deck ovens, and the installation process may be more involved.  Though price varies significantly depending on the vendor, there are few “budget-oriented” options on the market.

Limited Cooking Space

Brick ovens demand a sizable amount of space in a kitchen — at minimum, brick ovens occupy around 150 cubic feet, with some occupying well over 450 cubic feet.  As such, unless you are operating a pizzeria (or pizza is a core menu offering in your restaurant), then purchasing a brick oven may not necessarily be a sensible use of otherwise limited kitchen space.

Demanding to Operate and Maintain

Brick ovens require substantial training and skill to operate effectively.  If staff are not properly trained, you could run into issues with burnt pizza and temperature control problems.  Brick ovens also tend to be demanding with regard to maintenance — employees must regularly clean the interior of the oven to ensure that food scraps are not left inside (thus burning and affecting temperature control).

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